NPC orders Miss Earth pageant organizers to explain data privacy measures

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, November 13) — The National Privacy Commission (NPC) ordered the organizers of Miss Earth 2018 to explain their data protection measures in light of the sexual harassment allegations surrounding the pageant.

NPC, in its letter to Carousel Productions, said the organizer is considered a personal information controller under the Data Privacy Act of 2012. This obligates them to follow data protection regulations.

"The NPC's database shows no record of the organizer, its Data Protection Officer (DPO), nor details of its data processing system. This signifies potential non-compliance with the Data Privacy Act and implies possible negligence in adhering to data protection standards set by the commission," it said in a statement.

Miss Earth-Canada Jaime Yvonne Vandenberg withdrew from the competition when a sponsor started harassing her on her second day in the Philippines. She said the sponsor got her mobile number without her consent and kept calling her to ask for her hotel and room number.

Vanderberg also complained the pageant organizers confiscated her passport, but Carousel has denied this.

The NPC ordered Carousel President Ramon Monzon and Executive Vice President Lorraine Schuck to explain their protocols and the circumstances surrounding Vandenberg's allegations within five days.

NPC Chairman Raymund Liboro said the law mandates having a data privacy officer for organizations to safeguard their data.

"Every organization has to have someone whose job it is to ensure that the personal information they have been entrusted with remains private and safe from potential misuse," said NPC Chairman and Privacy Commissioner Raymund Enriquez Liboro.